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News

Study Confirms Long-Lasting Benefit Of Herceptin For Women With Early-Stage Breast Cancer

Posted Date: March 01, 2011

Women with an aggressive type of early-stage breast cancer (HER2-positive disease) given trastuzumab (Herceptin) for one year following standard chemotherapy are at significantly less risk of the cancer returning, and the effect is long lasting, according to the long-term results of the landmark HERA trial published Online First in The Lancet Oncology.

Women with an aggressive type of early-stage breast cancer (HER2-positive disease) given trastuzumab (Herceptin) for one year following standard chemotherapy are at significantly less risk of the cancer returning, and the effect is long lasting, according to the long-term results of the landmark HERA trial published Online First in The Lancet Oncology.

Around 20-30% of women with breast cancer have HER2-positive cancer and are at high risk of cancer recurrence and of dying from the disease. Trastuzumab is a monoclonal antibody developed to block the cancer-causing activity of the HER2 protein and has been shown to prolong survival in patients with advanced breast cancer.

The study’s authors conclude: “We strongly discourage the concurrent use of trastuzumab and anthracycline-based regimens in clinical practice outside the context of a clinical trial…To validate this treatment approach in the clinical setting, a properly powered, randomised phase 3 clinical trial…[of] sequential versus concomitant administration of trastuzumab and anthracycline-based chemotherapy…is needed.”

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